Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Valleys of Sorrow and Rivers of Joy

We are all dealing with grief differently around here. But thankfully, we are all doing so quite respectfully. Leah is my peacemaker. She wants everyone to just "be happy and think of all the good things about Grandma" while Hannah is more of an internal processor. She remains quiet on the outside, but on the inside she is thinking through things and occasionally she will let a few tears through. Mike is my rock. He is doing an awesome job taking over a lot of the responsibilities of the house, but is also a shoulder for me to cry on. He is grieving in his own way because he too lost someone close. My dad and I are talkers. I want to talk things out, share stories, laugh, cry, and reflect. I wear my emotions on my sleeve, and it feels good for me to cry when I need to!

I met a very dear friend tonight at a local coffee shop-- a friend who just two years ago lost her dad to pancreatic cancer. I needed to talk to her, to hear about her process of saying good-bye to a parent. I needed to know that life will go on, that there will be joy again. She let me talk and cry and show all of my emotions, and she empathized with me because she has been there. She warned me that there is no road map for grief. Everyone's journey will be different, and that I shouldn't rush the process. Meeting with her was a definite bright spot in my day.

Another sweet friend emailed me the lyrics to a song that have spoken volumes to my soul as I've listened to it and reflected on the words these last few days. It is called "The Valley Song" and the chorus says, "I will sing of your mercy that leads me through valleys of sorrow to rivers of joy." I know that this season of mourning and walking through the darkest valley I have ever known is just that-- a season. I will always miss my mom, but my pain will eventually ease and change shape. It will not be such an open wound, but rather a faded scar. And eventually, as God heals my heart, I can experience a river of joy.

Oh Lord, I know that this valley of sorrow will be followed by a river of joy one day. Thank you for walking with me down this long, twisty road. I know I am not alone.


Jacquelyn said...

I forgot about that song. It's a good one.

Maria Rose said...

You are so blessed to have such a loving support system as they are blessed to have you!

Heather said...

Emily, just wanted you to know that you are on my heart each and every day and I pray that the pain eases. Sending hugs your way!